Yours truly was perfectly dressed in sexy casual…the “oh, this old thing?” type look hoping it would read as accidental although personally I find dressing down to be far more tedious than dressing up…..the fancier a place is, the fewer options I have in my closet – thus wardrobe decisions to go to the Oscars would be made in a millisecond and yet the choice for what to wear to the movie theater can take an hour….anyway….you get the picture.
I am ready at 6:00 p.m., then it is 7:00 p.m., finally 7:30 and watching “Access Hollywood” is just not taking my mind off the potential blow off that was happening. I called a girlfriend who was in the dog run with her Chihuahua to see if she could spot him from her perch and indeed she did. He was laughing with guys from the band, under a tree, while smoking a cigarillo. Bastard!
I called him from my other line while my spy was watching (to see if he looked at the phone ringing and ignored my call), but he picked up (good boy.) It was now 8:00 and I tried to sound nonchalant and said “So, what’s up for tonight…” in as much of a laid-back tone as I could possibly muster considering the cicumstances (even though I was actually boiling under the surface trying to maintain my composure) and he responded by saying the absolute unthinkable. He canceled on me.
He said he was too tired to go out, but we would do it another time. I told him that I am leaving for Europe in four days and he suggested getting together when I got back. I said “whatever” and hung up. Not cool – I know….on either of our sides. Spy….still on the other line hung out long enough to see him gather his things and wander out of the park alone – away from the direction of my apartment. She offered to tail him for as long as her Chihuahua could hold out, but he really wasn’t worth the effort.
An hour later – he called! He was sitting in Café Reggio by himself and wanted to know if I still wanted to have a date tonight before he headed home to Harlem. He felt bad and couldn’t go through with canceling. I picked my discarded, casually cute, outfit up off the floor and rushed out to do what…..I wasn’t sure? Either save my pride or crush it completely.The date was awkward, we had a coffee with rum and watched homeless people and rambunctious NYU kids ramble past our sidewalk table. The bill came and my dancer started pulling crumpled dollar bills out of his pocket and straightened them on the table, one by one. The sight was too much to bear – and I paid the bill with very little resistance on his side. I couldn’t let our two drinks wipe out half of what he had made that day…and he did seem relieved. However, at that moment I felt an odd role reversal for the first time that I didn’t quite like. At least my trip to Europe was right around the corner…and even a five year old French boy would know better than to let a girl pay a bill! From what I remember, at least. Oh tell me the old country hasn’t changed!